Kathleen Oppenheimer Berkey
Associate / Joined Firm - 2011
Fort Myers 1833 Hendry Street Fort Myers, FL 33901
Kathleen Oppenheimer Berkey is an attorney and certified land planner (AICP) in the Pavese Law Firm’s Land Use, Zoning and Local Government; Real Estate; Environmental and Water; and Condominium and Homeowners’ Associations practice areas. Her practice focuses primarily on planning, zoning, real estate, and environmental issues related to the development of land. This includes: permitting, drafting comprehensive plan amendments, and representing clients in local government administrative matters before city and county commissions, councils, and boards. As a certified land planner (AICP), Ms. Berkey can also testify as an expert witness on land use and zoning issues.
Ms. Berkey’s experience includes having prepared variance, conditional use, special exception, and permit applications for wireless telecommunications facilities across dozens of jurisdictions in the Baltimore/Washington area; presenting proposed sites to local land use officials and the public at community input meetings and public hearings; performing zoning ordinance reviews; reviewing zoning drawings prior to submittal for compliance with public agencies and client requirements; and monitoring legislation. She gained extensive experience in building the relationships with landowners, adjacent neighbors, community residents, planners and other governmental officials, land use and telecommunications lawyers, and citizen groups necessary to support proposed sites throughout the zoning and permitting process.
After her time in wireless site development, Ms. Berkey earned her Juris Doctor (J.D.) and Master of City and Regional Planning (M.C.R.P.) degrees under a dual-degree program sponsored by the University of North Carolina School of Law and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Department of City and Regional Planning. Her studies focused primarily on land use and environmental law/planning.
In her spare time, Ms. Berkey serves as Co-Chair of the Urban Land Institute Southwest Florida’s Young Leaders Group and Women’s Leadership Initiative, Co-Chair for the Lee County Bar’s Pro Bono Committee, Southwest Regional Chair on the Board of Governors for Connect Florida by Leadership Florida, and Director on the Franklin & Marshall College Alumni Association Board. Ms. Berkey is also the Founding President of the Young Affiliated Professionals (YAP) of the Gulf Coast Humane Society.
Selected Publications and Presentations
- Kathleen Oppenheimer Berkey, AICP & Todd K. BenDor, A Comprehensive Solution to the Marine Biofouling Problem for the Endangered Florida Manatee and Other Species, 42:2 Envtl. Law 415, 415-67 (2012).
- Please click here for a list of additional publications.
- “What the Scuttlebutt is All About: Opportunities and Incentives for Renewable Energy in Florida,” co-presenter, Florida Chapter of the American Planning Association’s annual conference (Sep. 14, 2012).
- “The Role of Land Use Lawyers and Planners Throughout the Various Phases of Land Development,” guest lecturer, Real Estate Fundamentals, Florida Gulf Coast University (Oct. 7, 2014).
- “Building Healthy Places: Integrating Health into Planning, Designing, Developing, and Managing our Communities,” co-presenter, Florida Chapter of the American Planning Association’s annual conference (Sep. 12, 2014).
- “Follow and Promote @Yourself Online: Defrag and Optimize Your #OnlineBrand,” presenter, Franklin & Marshall College Webinar Series (May 22, 2014).
- “The Role of Land Use Lawyers and Planners Throughout the Various Phases of Land Development,” guest lecturer, Real Estate Fundamentals, Florida Gulf Coast University (Sep. 12, 2013).